Just a reminder that it is half term, so there are no lessons, groups or courses this week (w/c commencing 23rd October).We are back on Monday 30th October for the second half of the term.CHRISTMAS WITH CODA

SAVE THE DATE – SUNDAY 10th DECEMBEROur Christmas concert event this year will be on Sunday 10th December from 6.30 – 10.00pm at New Milton Memorial Centre, Whitefield Road, New Milton BH25 6DE. We will be enjoying performances from Rusty Rockers, Ukulele Band, Blues Orchestra, Health & Happiness Choir, Folk Orc… and more!Plus there will be Christmas arts & crafts, mince pies and a bar.Everyone is welcome – please bring the family – we would love to see as many of you as possible, so please come along and join us for some Christmas cheer. 

More news on lots more Christmas activities to come after half term! CODA’S WORK WITH OLDER PEOPLE Our award-winning work with the elderly was necessarily suspended during the pandemic but, working with partners including Sovereign Housing, Bournemouth Hospital Dementia Unit and Memory Works, we will be resuming music workshops and therapeutic interventions with older people and people with dementia over the coming months. NFU Mutual Agents and their staff at the New Forest, Isle of Wight and Bournemouth agency recently nominated Coda Music and Arts Trust to receive a donation of £6,443 from NFU Mutual’s national £1.92million ‘Agency Giving Fund’ to support our work with older people in the local community. This generous donation will help us with our crucial work with older people, providing much-needed support for people with Dementia in a variety of settings.John Heather, Senior Agent at NFU Mutual’s New Forest, Isle of Wight and Bournemouth agency said: We have chosen to support a charity that directly helps the local community by using the arts and music to focus on education, support, and wellbeing of the elderly in the community.”To watch a video clip of how NFU Mutual’s donation will support Coda click here NEW STROKE & PARKINSON’S CHOIRTHURSDAYS, 3pm – 4.30pm Starting FebruaryFREE to attend In the new year, we plan to rekindle our singing group for people with Parkinson’s Disease and those recovering from a stroke. We ran a similar vocal group for many years prior to the pandemic and are keen to re-establish these sessions.Singing can stimulate the muscles used for swallowing and breathing and can help build vocal strength for those learning to speak again (common issues for people affected by both Parkinson’s and stroke). Music and singing also improves posture, breathing and motor skills, which can help to combat involuntary twitches and tremors. It is a proven method of support and was demonstrated to be of great benefit with those we worked with previously, so we are very keen to re-establish the group.

This singing group will be led by Fiona Pritchard, who has trained in the ‘Sing To Beat’ method and who is a partner in our work with the University of the West of England (UWE Bristol) Music Therapy (MA) placement programme. We will work with local care homes and social care services to reach those most in need and we hope to offer this group here at Coda Music and Arts Centre on Thursday afternoons from early 2024. If you, or anyone you know, have been affected by Parkinson’s or a stroke and would be interested in attending this choir, please get in touch. NEW EXHIBITION CELEBRATES THE hArt LEGACYA new exhibition for the Coda cafe is currently being curated by Heidi Stellar (our Creative Programme Director) in consultation with our Art Therapists, to celebrate the legacy programmes of hArt and their contribution now to Coda Music and Arts Trust. The exhibition will bring together artworks created in former hArt sessions and feature some of the fantastic work created in Creative Wellbeing and Club Create alongside art created through the Arts On Prescription programme. Highlighting the talent of our local community, reflecting the positive contribution of hArt and the powerful positive benefits of art as therapy, the exhibits will include, amongst others, our much-loved Baa-bie.Please come to the Coda cafe after half term to enjoy this celebratory new exhibition.


Arts on Prescription is a 14 Week programme of weekly sessions, led by an Art Psychotherapist, for adults (18+) that have been referred to us by Social Workers, GP’s, Social Prescribers or via self-referral.The programme supports the mental health of people of all ages and abilities across the New Forest, supports traditional mental health services at a time of crisis and helps to meet the needs of people experiencing loneliness, anxiety, depression and lack of confidence.

Our Art Therapists design a 14 Week creative plan of activities designed to support the client in expressing their fears, concerns and hopes, through art, in a safe and supportive space.

Our new Arts on Prescription programme, which started on 9th October, is currently taking place in Pennington with Art Psychotherapist Charlotte Burleigh and will run through to January 2024. This current programme in Pennington is at full capacity but, as part of a rolling programme around the New Forest, there will be a new Arts on Prescription programme in New Milton in the new year.If you would like any more information about this, or the process of referral, please contact

The Arts on Prescription programme in Pennington is supported by the Mayor of Lymington and Pennington, Councillor Jack Davies, as is the weekly Creative Wellbeing sessions at St Mark’s Church Hall. CREATIVE WELLBEING Our regular open Creative Wellbeing groups continue to run across Hampshire and the New Forest, with sessions in New Milton, Pennington, Hythe and Fordingbridge. Full details of sessions can be found below. 

CHRIS HOPGOOD PATERNITY LEAVEChris Hopgood will be taking planned Paternity leave this term. It is anticipated that this will be towards the end of October but will, naturally, depend on baby’s arrival date!

This does mean that we will need to cancel up to two weeks of one-to-one tuition and Blues Orchestra sessions, possibly at short notice, around this time. As soon as we have news, we will be in touch to confirm dates and details of any cancelled sessions.   Thank you for your understanding and I’m sure you will join us in wishing Chris and his family the very best for their new arrival.   PHIL IN LIVING MAGAZINE If you pick up a current copy of ‘Living’ magazine, you might just recognise a familiar face on p205.Find out what inspires Phil and what he loves about living in Dorset in his ‘My Dorset’ article below.Enjoy your half term break and we look forward to welcoming you back on Monday 30th October.